The heirloom tomatoes are coming off by the shirt full. The hot jalapeños are tasty. The Concord grapes are making my kitchen smell so good. The produce from September is a faithful reminder good flavor starts with desperate roots drawing out supply from plain brown soil. The base of the root breaks its way in hard earth. Learning is a posture to approach everything.
The weathered vine growing up from the ground doesn’t look like much until the taste of the grape bursts with flavor in your mouth and then you know it’s worth. Endure today knowing hard things can become sweet. Hard places teach us to hold fast and hard seasons school us well. The fullness of the promise follows endurance. Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
Summer to summer can yeild a completely different harvest.
The bummer summer was when I wrote laments and took the month of August to deal with the pain of grief that was hanging around like a guest in my kitchen long after the dishes have been done.
This summer was Africa. The contrast between 2016 and 2017 demonstrated God’s gift of joy does come and He is faithful. This summer was full of dancing, skillful singing, and an African Safari. Larger than expected insects, fireflies dancing all night, and great meals and new friendships for life. The good feeling of giving God praise filled my July. And it worked.
Sing praise and the next thing you know Jesus inhabits the room. Try it.
The year of pushing toward God’s glory brought me to Uganda. A land where fruit is sweet. Literally. After the first night of our City Wide Worship gathering a friend of mine handed me a fresh local banana and it was so tasty.
Prior to worship our team gathered in a room not made for shoes. I was standing by an open window with fresh rain on the outside. We had the option take your shoes off or move the prayer rugs. We did a bit of both and formed a rather large circle. After this rad prayer session I asked each team member what they would bring to God that night at City Wide Worship. Many of our Ugandan team members said their smile or dancing. The gift of giving God joy in celebration was our theme. The worship experience that night at Gabba Community Church was exhilarating. I thank God for the overwhelming happiness of praise.
And I’m not the only one. There is a nation rising from the aftermath of a civil war who is armed with the beauty of dance and song, and they have brought real joy to my life. I am forever grateful. In your smile I found my smile. The fruit is so sweet.
Hebrews 6:11-12 And we desire for each one of you to show the same diligence [all the way through] so as to realize and enjoy the full assurance of hope until the end, so that you will not be [spiritually] sluggish, but [will instead be] imitators of those who through faith [lean on God with absolute trust and confidence in Him and in His power] and by patient endurance [even when suffering] are [now] inheriting the promises.
Joy is gone from our hearts; our dancing has turned to mourning. (Summer 2015-2016)
Then young women will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow. (Summer 2017)
Trust him with your process.